These days there is a lot of talk about “the cloud” with all kinds of IT services. We’ve all seen services that store documents and photos in the cloud and certainly plenty of applications in the cloud. When we talk about “the cloud”, we are referring to servers that are accessed over the Internet. Cloud servers are located in data centers all over the world. What exactly does that mean when it comes to having a cloud-based PBX or Cloud VoIP Phone System?
What is a Cloud Based PBX?
If you’ve been thinking about upgrading your old business phone system or you’re a new company starting up and researching business phone systems, you have most likely come across a variety of options and services. One service you have probably seen is the option to have your phone system hosted in the cloud. There are many names for this type of service such as business VoIP, hosted VoIP, hosted PBX, cloud-based PBX, and virtual PBX. These names all refer to the same technology. So, what does this mean and what are the advantages to your business?
Until recently, businesses had an on-site PBX (Private Branch eXchange) phone system that controlled their office phones and managed the connection to the PSTN (Public Switched Telephone Network). You would have a large clunky piece of equipment that was mounted to the wall of your server room or phone closet somewhere on-site at your location. This PBX handled routing all the phone calls in and out of your business.
This type of legacy, on-premise system, is being phased out by most businesses today as there are many benefits and cost savings to switching over to a PBX in the cloud.
When it comes to a business phone system being cloud-based it simply means that the server (or PBX) that controls the phones is located and accessible on the internet rather than living on-site in your office. All the great calling features (and many additional ones you couldn’t have before) are provided by the server in the cloud.
The only equipment you need on-site is a high-speed Internet connection and IP phones. IP phones are simply phones that are designed to connect directly to an internet connection to make and receive calls instead of the older analog landline phones.
Benefits of a Cloud Hosted PBX
There are many benefits to having a cloud-based VoIP Business phone service or a cloud hosted PBX:
No on-site equipment required
You no longer need to have phone-equipment on-site being that it is hosted remotely in the cloud. This provides multiple cost benefits including savings from maintenance and upgrade costs. You also don’t have to move, relocate, or purchase new equipment if your business moves locations or adds additional branch offices.
No maintenance and easy set up
The only on-site equipment required when using a Cloud PBX solution are the IP Phones. This means there is no additional equipment you need to manage and maintain. Your service provider can make any set up and configuration changes through an online portal.
As mentioned earlier there are multiple cost savings when using a cloud PBX system instead of an on-premise system. Installation, purchase, and maintenance of on-site PBX equipment is high usually costing thousands of dollars in upfront costs. With a cloud solution, you avoid these up-front costs and the monthly phone service is cheaper, including lower regulatory service fees.
Made for mobility
Working in today’s world requires being able to stay connected working from multiple locations – both on the road and from home. Cloud-based VoIP Phone systems provide the ability to use smartphone apps to make and receive calls. Features like voicemail to email and virtual faxing let you get your important information and messages from anywhere.
Also, because the PBX is in the cloud you can simply bring an IP phone home and connect it to your high-speed internet connection. Once it boots up you can make and receive calls just like you were in the office including dialing coworkers by extension – it’s all seamless!
What’s your next step?
Cloud Hosted VoIP Phone Systems are a very popular choice for business today. They can save your business money and provide enterprise features you never had before. It’s important to compare providers and look for someone that will not only provide you with reliable, affordable service but also help you set up, configure, and support your business moving forward.
Want to learn more about our Highbridge Communications Cloud Hosted VoIP Business Phone System? We can perform a complimentary phone and network audit to help you decide if hosted VoIP is right for your business. We’ll also demo the phone system and show you the cost savings and improved features over your existing system. Call us at 315-473-9600 to learn more.